Home of the LEDmePlay. Since 2013.



The LEDmePlayBoy is a handheld variant of the LEDmePlay. Technically, it is mostly identical and compatible. The same Arduino Mega 2560 is used. Instead of the 6mm pitch (distance between the RGB LEDs) of the original LEDmePlay, the LEDmePlayBoy uses a compatible matrix with a pitch of 4mm. To control the games, an analog thumb joystick and two fire buttons are used. 8 AA batteries power the device. Of course, also a power supply can be used.


LEDmePlayBoy with Invaders

If you want to rebuild the LEDmePlayBoy, the best start is to read the construction manual for the LEDmePlay. Most of the parts and connections are the same. The list below shows some special parts we suggest for our mobile version. This is no detailed construction manual but more a proposal for a mobile version.

Special components

RGB LED matrix 32 * 32 with a 4mm pitch and pixel configuration SMD3528 1R1G1B
Plastic case (should have a depth of 130mm so that the matrix can be mounted and should have enough space for the Arduino Mega, the joystick, two battery boxes, and a speaker.)
Thumb joystick KY-023 (search for "Thumb Joystick for Arduino")
Push buttons (for Fire A, Fire B, Reset, and Pause) which can be mounted in the case cover and the rear panel
2 * battery box (e.g. Bopla 46600000 (65 x 65 x 21.5 mm) by Conrad)

Hints for construction

There are so many plastic cases on the market. It is not easy to suggest a specific one, because it might be problematic for you to procure it. We bought ours at Conrad. The best might be to print your own if you have the possibility. Plastic cases can easily be tooled with a Dremel or a similar device to cut the holes and windows for buttons, connectors, and the matrix.

In comparison to the LEDmePlay, the LEDmePlayBoy uses an analog joystick which must be connected with the analog pins of the Arduino Mega. For the X-axis we use analog-in 8. For the Y-axis we use analog-in 9. The thumb joystick also contains a fire button (press the complete joystick down). It is connected with digital pin 44 (however, currently not used with our games). Please note that the analog joystick must be - in comparison to the joysticks for the LEDmePlay - connected with the 5V pin of the Arduino. For the thumb joystick we created a kind of stand from parts of circuit boards and screws with distance sleeves. It must be optimized for the plastic case so that it brings the joystick into the right height. The stand is then mounted to the rear side of the case so that the joysticks peeks out of a hole cut into the front panel (cf. picture below).

Tooled lower side of the case

Thumb joystick with stand

Assembled parts

The battery boxes must be connected as a parallel circuit. However, the batteries within a box must be connected in series so that their voltage sums up to 6V. With the two parallel 6V packs, there is enough power to run everything (unfortunately not very long, expect 2 hours depending on the batteries). Since the batteries will be empty soon, you might want to use a power supply. We soldered a switch to toggle between batteries and an AC adapter. We know it is a very inelegant solution but it comes without any electronic parts.

Furthermore, our LED matrix showed strange colors at the first try. We found out that the color assignment differs slightly from the matrix type used for the LEDmePlay. However, this need not necessarily be the case with every matrix with a 4mm pitch. Just check it. There might be many slightly different variants available. Ours must be connected like that:

Pole 1: B1 digital 24 (1st pin of the 1st length 2 multipin connector)
Pole 2: R1 digital 25 (2nd pin of the 1st length 2 multipin connector)
Pole 3: G1 digital 26 (1st pin of the 2nd length 2 multipin connector)
Pole 5: B2 digital 27 (2nd pin of the 2nd length 2 multipin connector)
Pole 6: R2 digital 28 (1st pin of the 3rd length 2 multipin connector)
Pole 7: G2 digital 29 (2nd pin of the 3rd length 2 multipin connector)

Fully connected LEDmePlayBoy

Rear panel

LEDmePlayBoy from the back

LEDmePlayBoy running "Invaders"on YouTube channel


Great stuff
Posted: 2016-02-21, 23:55:01

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